Thursday, December 20, 2018

Museum of the American Printing House for the Blind - Free!

Hi! We're back! Amazon was crazy busy this year and we didn't get much time to blog. We will try to do a better job blogging in 2019 - we promise!
We did get a chance to check out one museum in Louisville - the Museum of the American Printing House for the Blind (APH). If  you've been reading this blog for a while, you won't be shocked to know that, yup, this museum is free!
The APH was started 150 years ago, thanks mostly to the efforts one man, Dempsey Sherrod. Louisville was chosen as the home of APH because of the city's central location. The nonprofit's museum is on the second floor and is our favorite type of museum - they encourage touching the exhibits! (Which is a good reason to donate a little to this musuem - we all need to support this!)
Most of APH's products are written in Braille. Braille was created by Louis Braille, a blind French man who was trying to figure out a way for the blind to read and write.
Although Louis created Braille, there were several competing reading systems for the blind throughout the nineteenth century. 
The musuem does a great job talking about this "battle of the dots" and the ensuing confusion before printers settled on one system.
The museum also has a large collection of different styles of Braille machines, many of which were innovations created by APH employees.
One section of the museum is dedicated to educating visitors on the many needs of blind students,
andincludes the many tools and inventions that APH has created over the years to meet these needs.
It's Buddy! Buddy was the first American Seeing Eye Dog. Buddy's human would go on to found the American Seeing Eye in 1929.
There was also a fascinating corner dedicated to Stevie Wonder, highlighting the the unique challenges he faced as he worked to get an education while handling the demands of being a child performer. Stevie is so successful today, we often don't think of the huge hurdles he faced at age 11 when he signed his first record deal.
The museum had so much to see (and touch!) we could've have spent the entire day there. Our stomachs, however, insisted on lunch. Fortunately, the museum is pretty close to a great restaurant we found last year - Feast's BBQ.
Their brisket is moist and flavorable, and the fried cheesecake sticks are excellent.  They also have smoked tofu. Yes, you read that right - smoked tofu. Since I am one of those weird people who loves tofu AND bbq,  this makes me very happy. Also, fried cheesecake. Just saying.